Political Power Is Not Just About Setting Thieves Free--JJ Replies Nii Lante
Former President Jerry John Rawlings is upset with National Democratic Congress [NDC], Member of Parliament for Odododiodoo Constituency, Edwin Nii Lante Vanderpuye, for suggesting that the opposition party will free jailed former GYEEDA boss, Abuga Pele, if the party wins power in the 2020 polls.
According to Mr. Rawlings, such ideas and actions will only ensure the NDC remains in opposition for a “long, long time.”
In a strongly-worded statement published on his Twitter page, the former president said no one must be put above the law, and that persons who perpetrate crimes must duly be punished.
“If the quest for political power is to release wrongdoers from prison, then the NDC is laying its own foundation to remain in opposition for a long long time,” Rawlings said.
Edwin Nii Lante Vanderpuye, during the NDC’s Eastern Regional unity walk over the weekend, told Citi News that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) was working hard to win the general elections in 2020, and will after that release the former NDC MP, Abuga Pele.
Edwin Nii Lante Vanderpuye
Mr. Vanderpuye said the NDC's morale remains high ahead of the 2020 elections, despite the incarceration of Pele last week, adding that the party was on course to regain power.
“It is unfortunate but I can only say that this will not dampen the spirit of the NDC. Between 2001 and 2004, they sentenced Tsatsu Tsikata, Dan Abodakpi, Ibrahim Adam and Kwame Peprah. It did not stop us from winning elections in 2008. We are going to win the elections and bring Abuga Pele out,” he said.
But Rawlings, who is the founder of the NDC and has been a strong critic of developments within the party especially the conduct of some of its members, said “the corruption by some of those who were in office, resulting in a humiliating defeat in the last election does not appear to have affected their conscience and reasoning in any way.”
Read his full statement below:
POLITICAL POWER NOT FOR FREEING THE GUILTY
Stealing and corruption puts no one above the law. Those who have committed crimes deserve to be punished. If the quest for political power is to release wrongdoers from prison, then the NDC is laying its own foundation to remain in opposition for a long long time. Fortunately, this kind of talk belongs to a handful of people in the NDC leadership who have gained power and influence they do not deserve and the sooner they are packed off, the better for the NDC and this country.
Obviously, the corruption by some of those who were in office, resulting in a humiliating defeat in the last election does not appear to have affected their conscience and reasoning in any way.
The NDC needs to regain its moral compass. A party born out of the explosive circumstances of our past should not find herself so HIGH on the scale of corruption. Just as the negative elements in various parties are networking to protect their misdeeds, so also must the positive minded personalities and supporters in the various parties also network to contain and keep such elements from political power. While the current circumstances favour patriotic forces the most, the unpatriotic elements are more bent on collaborating and exploiting the constitutional climate. Let’s make changes for the better. Clear the bad and retain the good. Bring on board other patriots.
‘Abuga Pele jailed’
Abuga Pele, the former National Coordinator of the Ghana Youth Employment and Entrepreneurial Agency (GYEEDA), was sentenced alongside the Chief Executive Officer of Goodwill International Group, Philip Assibit, to a combined jail-term of 18 years on various counts, including willfully causing financial loss to the state.
Abuga Pele (L) and Philip Assibit (R)
The activities of the two led to the state losing about GHS4.1 million.